View Full Version : Working on a M&M-inspired casting system for 3.5

2010-04-24, 09:29 AM
I suppose it could also be called a semi-psionic system, but the idea comes primarily from the crazy levels of customization available in the M&M system.

Basically, it will be a point-based casting system. A certain number of points/day (or encounter, that's still up in the air) that you use to develop and cast unique spells to fit a given situation. Similar to M&M, increasing beyond a base effect (say, a touch attack to do damage becoming a ranged effect to do damage) will cost additional points, but it allows a great deal of modification.

The overall goal of the project is to design a system of magic that is balanced (points spent on a single effect are limited by level, a la psionics) as well as fun to use and play. I want to remove the restriction of a limited list of named spells and allow magic users to be as wholly unique as they want to be (a la Mutants and Masterminds ridiculous levels of customization of powers). I want there to be no ultimate spell to use for any given spell level, but instead an array of things a caster could do to contribute meaningfully to a combat (get rid of be-all-end-alls like color spray.) I also intend to remove the necessity for redundant spells across the books to appeal to specific flavors, allowing for pretty much anything a player could want to do (i.e. if they want to have an ice-themed beguiler-type, they could dominate creatures by freezing them over and manipulating the ice just by adding an [Ice] descriptor and making the save Fort based.)

Right now, my goal is to compile a (relatively) comprehensive list of general effects casters will want access to. From there, I'll add modifiers (such as range, area, duration, etc.) and what the points do.

The effects I've come up with for now are:

Boost rolls
Harm Rolls
Static damage
Boost stats (ability scores, AC)
Harm stats
Detect (magic, poison, etc.)
Decipher (scrolls, language, etc.)
Divine (divination is the idea here. Know facts, health and stuff)
Daze (up to stun and such)
Illusions (sound and such)
Summon (mounts, minions, modifiers for more permanent minons i.e. undead (alt power?))
Distance communication
Telekinesis (perhaps even vaguer, just manipulating objects)
Environment Control (Rough terrain, slickness, etc.)
Creature Control (Fascinate effects on up to dominate monster)

2010-04-24, 10:41 AM
IRC Monte Cook did a 3.5 WoD darkness type setting that had that exact type of casting system. You may want to check it out.